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Thread: Color study

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Rio de Janeiro
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts

    Color study

    I'm suck at colors.
    This is my first real try to find good colors to paint.
    Usually I only do B&W.

    Attachment 738530
    Last edited by Harijan; July 31st, 2009 at 01:28 PM. Reason: adding thumb

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Thanked 177 Times in 139 Posts
    Well, they certainly aren't " realistic" in the most bland use of the word, but the picture has a harmony to it- the colors work very well together.
    "A drawing is not necessarily academic because it is thorough, but only because it is dead. Neither is a drawing necessarily academic because it is done in what is called a conventional style, any more than it is good because it is done in an unconventional style. The test is whether it has life and conveys genuine feeling."- Harold Speed

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Thanked 377 Times in 165 Posts
    read this

    No one is born a masterful colorist, if you haven't worked at it before, you can't expect to be good at it from the get go. Like anything else, it's going to take a lot of hard work and study (have you ever heard of someone being born a great surgeon? yeah..of course not)

    If you want to get good at this though, ditch the photographs and get working from life. Simple still lifes are good, as are landscapes, nothing too fancy. You can paint them digitally too if you want.

    The main thing with color is to keep it simple. You can't determine the color of something by looking straight into that area of color. You have to look at the places where one color area comes against another, so you have a point of reference.

    Also, keep it logical, start with the simplest thing possible. Most things you encounter are going to be either predominantly blue, red or yellow, and you can mix anything with these primaries, plus white..and sometimes black.

    If you're painting a lime green shirt in sunlight...your dominant color is likely to be a yellowish green. Since it's yellow-ish, mix yellow and blue, but obviously use more yellow than blue. If it's too intense chromatically (too "bright") then you add the very sparingly, to make the mix, "less green". Then determine if you need to add a little white to hit the right value.

    Hope this helps.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Thanked 337 Times in 227 Posts
    color can be taught , and knowing a few rules never hurts, follow the link in my sig.

    using Ramon's example of yellow green , instead of reducing it with a color directly opposite the color wheel like red,instead mix two other colors yelloworange and bluegreen (depending on colorkey)then mix that color into the yellow green to reduce it, If further reduction is required then you can add a mix of your 3 primary key colors to bring that color down, that way you dont deadin the color as much by adding complimentary pigments into the color mix, or as many.. Fletcher describes it way better than I ever could.
    Last edited by Zazerzs; July 31st, 2009 at 09:16 PM. Reason: explaining
    "Talent is a word found in the mouth of the lazy to dismiss the hard work of those who have achieved."
    Anatomy Thread
    Interested in learning more about color? Read this!
    Fletcher:Color Control

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Near Brussels
    Thanked 154 Times in 100 Posts
    In paint, the problem with using complementary colors in reducing a mixture's chroma is that it's difficult to keep control over the value and desired hue at the same time. In order to just lower chroma it's more useful to just add a gray of the same value. Also, I'm not sure in paint there is such a thing as true complementary 's.

    But Harijan, a very important thing to learn how to control is value. On the painting you posted both the light and shadow areas are washed out. Meaning there's not enough value gradation to show rounded form. On the shadow side your dark values are all too similar and too light too be in the shadow. On the light side your values are too similar as well and too light overall. Think of each little segment on the form that you're painting as having a very specific spatial orientation. If we know a) that light diminishes in strength as it travels away from it's source and b) that the form is as light or as dark as the planar orientation to the light allows. Then we could say hypothetically that no part in the portrait can be of equal value. If you drag or place the same values in different areas on the form it means they occupy the same place in space which they do not.

    Hope this helps a bit. Happy painting!
    Last edited by Art_Addict; August 4th, 2009 at 03:04 AM.

    "There is no such thing as 'accurate drawing'. There is beautiful
    drawing, and ugly, and nothing else." JAD Ingres, Ecrits sur l'art

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Rio de Janeiro
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
    I'm deeply grateful for all you guys.
    Thanx a lot for the explanation, I'm going to study more then I can to overcome my problem with colors.
    I think sometimes that my problem could be cause I don't have almost any experience with traditional painting. But excuses it's for the weak, im going to take it seriously and practice even more. When have something better then this, I'll post.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Thanked 40 Times in 40 Posts
    you are terribly DONT suck at colors!!!

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